First off I apologize for the insanely long update. I'm finally back home from my deployment. I have some time off work now and plan to spend most of it with my family, but did pick up a few car parts to stick on the Bluebird. Ironically, key parts were backordered that I purchased, so I'm kind of stuck on what I can accomplish ATM.
The first order of business is going to be some maintenance items I wanted to take care of before I left, but family time took priority and I just didn't get to it. The plan is to replace the valve stem seals. I'm getting a burning oil smell on long decels/long hills with engine braking. At the same time, I'll tackle the "valve" adjustments since I have to and I think there is one that's a bit loose. An conversion to an electronic distributor is also in the plans now that I ordered the correct one after my pre-deployment debacle. It also seems I previously ordered a valve cover gasket so any suggestions on which to use? Felpro or DNJ? Not pictured is supplies for an oil change and to change the transmission/rear end fluids.
Second order of business is going to be tackling/hiding my wiring in the engine bay. During this I'll move the battery to the trunk (still waiting on the battery holder), upgrade to modern relays for the headlights, and install two 8" electric fans in leiu of the plastic mechanical one. I'll run a relay for them controlled by a temperature switch that screws into my radiator (switch is backordered). I'll probably remove the battery tray as well during this, but not sure as I don't know if I'll have time to repaint the engine bay before getting restationed. Oh, and I got new headlight housings. I bought Vision-X 5.75 H4 conversions; but those are backordered too. I picked them because they had a nice cutoff pattern, they're DOT approved, have glass faces and aluminum housings. I had originally planned on HIDs, but decided I didn't want to ruin the "halogen bulb" look at night. Maybe down the road I will upgrade, but for now it's halogen. I'll run the Phillips X-treme 100+ bulbs; they seem to get great reviews as a solid choice.
The current exhaust on the car is somewhere around 1.5" diameter and is a slip fit kit the previous owner put on. I'd be lieing if I said I didn't I think it sounds great, but it rattles like crazy and keeps randomly springing leaks. I've spent way too much time trying to get it aligned and stop the leaks and haven't been successful. I'm also hoping a slightly larger exhaust and the electronic distributor (my current rotor/cap is pretty much gone) will open the top end a little bit. So I ordered some mandrel bends and I'll weld up a new one. The piping is 2.25", will have a resonator halfway, and then run through a 4x9" Magnaflow that's a straight through design. I'm hoping it's fairly quiet idling/cruising, but hoping it will yell a little bit when I push the car. I'm sure I ordered way too many bends, but I factored in me messing stuff up and it takes 1.5 weeks or more to get more piping in the mail so I erred on the side of caution.
While I was deployed, I would spend some off time perusing Yahoo Auctions Japan. I came across a set of badges that I didn't need because my car has all of them and I had previously found an 1800 SSS badge for the grill. They looked to be in good shape and were a better price than the single badge I previously bought for the whole package. I figured it wasn't a bad idea, so I bid on them and won.
I also spent sometime looking at wheels, I like the Watanabes on the car now, but I'm not a huge fan of how far they stick out past the front fender. I also don't think they'd fit in the rear if I straightened the camber up. So I was looking for a little while at some other wheels. I considered new wheels like Work Equips or Longchamp knock offs, but in the end decided to go old school. I found a set of Riverside R110. The fronts are 6" wide and the rears are 6.5" wide. I'll need to do a little sanding and some fixing of minor curb rash. I'll also replace the bolts in them with something not rusted. I think they will get dark metallic gray paint vs the gold. I plan to find some plain chrome centercaps. I can use my wife's arts and crafts machine to make stencils for paint masks to replicate the centercap logo; then just hit them with some black paint to create the logo permanently. I picked up some star shaped lug nuts to go with the star theme. They weren't super expensive, so I hope they don't get rusty right from the get go. I may match this finish or go with titanium neo-chrome finish for the wheel bolts. I'm not 100% sure on that yet.